WASHINGTON - Arms provided by the United States and Saudi Arabia to Syrian opposition groups frequently ended up in the hands of Islamic State, an arms monitoring group that analyzed weapons found on the battlefield said on Thursday.
Conflict Armament Research (CAR) said most Islamic State weapons were looted from the Iraqi and Syrian armies. But some were originally provided by other countries, mainly the United States and Saudi Arabia , to Syrian opposition groups fighting against President Bashar al-Assad.
"These findings are a stark reminder of the contradictions inherent in supplying weapons into armed conflicts in which multiple competing and overlapping non-state armed groups operate," the group said in a 200-page report.
CAR documented at least 12 cases of weaponry purchased by the United States that ended up in Islamic State's hands, either captured on the battlefield or acquired through shifting alliances within the Syrian opposition. Most of these items later ended up in Iraq, the monitor said.